Tressel asks for 5-game ban

Posted: March 18, 2011

Now that the NCAA has finalized its ruling that five Ohio State football players who took improper benefits are suspended for the first five games of the 2011 season, Buckeyes coach Jim Tressel says he wants the same punishment.

Last night, the NCAA denied Ohio State's appeal on behalf of the players including star quarterback Terrelle Pryor, reasserting that they must sit out the first five games this fall for selling autographed memorabilia and receiving discounted tattoos.

Tressel had been handed a separate two-game suspension by Ohio State after a later investigation for not notifying the NCAA, his Ohio State bosses or the school's compliance department that he was aware for more than 9 months - including throughout his team's 12-1 season in 2010 - of the players' improper benefits.

"Throughout this entire situation, my players and I have committed ourselves to facing our mistakes and growing from them; we can only successfully do this together," he said in a statement. "I spoke with athletics director [Gene] Smith, and our student-athletes involved, and told them that my mistakes need to share the same game sanctions."

Pryor, along with starting offensive lineman Mike Adams, leading rusher Daniel Herron, first-team receiver DeVier Posey and backup defensive lineman Solomon Thomas, acknowledged they sold rings, trophies and apparel in 2009.

In addition to sitting out the first five games against Akron, Toledo, the University of Miami, Colorado and Michigan State, they also must repay to charity the equivalent of the benefits they received, ranging from $1,000 to $2,500. The NCAA permitted them to play in the Sugar Bowl.

In other college football news:

* Murray Warmath, who coached Minnesota to a national championship and back-to-back Rose Bowls, has died at age 98.

Philly File

* Amile Jefferson, of Friends' Central School, was named Gatorade Pennsylvania Boys Basketball Player of the Year.

Sport Stops

* Paul Casey shot a 7-under 64 for a two-shot lead after one round of the PGA Tour's Transitions Championship in Palm Harbor, Fla.

* Top-ranked Caroline Wozniacki advanced to the BNP Paribas Open semifinals when Victoria Azarenka retired with a hip injury in Indian Wells, Calif.

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